Twitch’s most popular streamer had kept his dream a secret for over a year but had to open up after last week’s breakdown.
Ever since watching 2011’s The Grey last year, Tyler Blevins - better known as Ninja - has had one goal: quit streaming forever and follow in the footsteps of Liam Neeson’s Ottway to protect Alaskan oil line workers from vicious wolves. Despite the intensity of this dream, Blevins kept it a closely-guarded secret from all his fans and much of his family, fearing that his Twitch popularity would suffer if followers thought he wasn’t motivated to stream anymore. Those fears were unfounded, he learned, after suffering a breakdown on stream last week resulting in the entire Twitch community rallying around him for support.
The incident took place during the beginning of a standard Fortnite round a few minutes after Ninja dropped in. Heading towards Salty Springs, the streamer alarmed viewers by yelping on camera when another player in a wolf skin came around a corner and started firing. Rather than taking cover or firing back, Ninja instead dropped his controller and shut down the stream for the day, but not before observant fans noticed he had started to cry.
Early the next day Ninja was back on Twitch, not to play anything, but instead to explain the previous day’s reaction - the cause of which the internet had spent all the time between speculating. It was during this moment of open dialogue with fans that he chose to reveal his true aspiration of protecting the Alaskan oil workers. Expecting an immediate and severe drop in subscribers, Blevins was instead inundated with donations and messages of support as his dedicated fans rallied behind helping the streamer achieve his dream.
The unexpected outpouring of encouragement from fans was the final push Ninja needed to end his relationship with Twitch and start his journey towards taking on the Alaskan wilderness. Fellow streamers and other gaming personalities have all expressed their own support for Blevins's decision, and Twitch even put out a statement of their own to congratulate their most profitable partner for moving on to a new journey:
“While we won’t deny we’re upset to lose the person who’s filling our coffers,” the letter from Twitch PR reads, “the aggression of the Alaskan wolves is too dire a situation to ignore and is possibly the biggest threat facing our nation. We couldn’t be more proud of Mr. Belvin and his decision to help defend the Alaskan oil workers and we wish him all the best.”
Blevins announced he’ll be spending the next month training with firearms before packing up and moving to Alaska, never to touch Fortnite again.